Florida Gators vs. LSU Tigers
The Florida Gators and the LSU Tigers face off on Saturday in the Swamp in a battle of SEC unbeaten teams. The Tigers are -2.5 point favorites over the Gators.
The Florida Gators are one of the more surprising teams in the country this year as they had modest expectations but they have been impressive thus far including two big SEC road wins. Jeff Driskel has been sharp under center completing 69.6 percent of his passes with four touchdowns and an interception while rushing for 4.5 yards per carry and a touchdown. Mike Gillislee has been a difference maker in the backfield averaging 5.8 yards per carry with five touchdowns and bringing back a power game for the Gators. Jeff Reed leads the UF receivers with 16 catches, Quinton Dunbar has 10 catches and a touchdown, and Frankie Hammond has nine catches and two touchdowns. Defensively Florida has been tough especially in the second half of games as they allow 12.8 points per game, 119.2 rushing yards, and 185.8 passing yards with six interceptions but just five sacks. Josh Evans has 26 tackles, Jon Bostic has 22 tackles, and Matt Elam has 19 tackles to lead the Gators defense. While Florida has been tested, this is their biggest test yet but they are coming off of a bye week and of course are home.
The LSU Tigers had huge expectations coming into this season but apparently winning isn’t good enough as though they haven’t lost they have been dropping in the polls. QB Zach Mettingberger has completed 65.5 percent of his passes for six touchdowns and two interceptions but the Georgia transfer hasn’t exactly lit it up as he was expected to. In the Tigers’ backfield Kenny Hilliard is averaging 6.9 yards per carry with six touchdowns, Alfred Blue is averaging 6.8 yards per carry with two touchdowns, Michael Ford is averaging 5.9 yards per carry with two touchdowns, and Spencer Ware is averaging 5.1 yards per carry as LSU has been spreading the carries around. While the passing game may not be meeting expectations it is improved with Jarvis Landry having 18 catches and a touchdown, Odell Beckham Jr. with 16 catches and two touchdowns, Kadron Boone has 10 catches and three touchdowns and James Wright has 10 catches. The LSU defense is allowing 12.6 points per game, 83 rushing yards, and 134.8 passing yards with eight interceptions and 11 sacks. Kevin Minter has 34 tackles, Lamin Barrow has 30 tackles, and Eric Reid has 26 tackles while Micah Eugene has three sacks and Lavar Edwards has 2.5 sacks. LSU has appeared to be sleep walking at times and having all of their games on National TV has worked against them in the rankings but they will have center stage to show what they are made of on Saturday.
Florida is 5-1 against the spread following a bye week, 4-1 against the spread in their last five games, and 1-6 against the spread against a team with a winning record. LSU is 6-1 against the spread in their last seven road games, 7-2 against the spread in their last nine SEC games, and 9-3 against the spread in their last 12 games against a team with a winning record. Florida has covered in five of the last seven meetings of these two.
This one will probably be closer than most of the Saturday games have been but LSU simply has too much size up front and should wear down a Gator team that is clearly back on the upswing.
LSU Tigers -2.5 Florida Gators